The main action was to create the IRENES Land Use Tool (ILUT) to improve decision making and planning processes.

This has improved implementation of the UK Net Zero Strategy by enabling local government stakeholders to better assess options, land use trade-offs and synergies when evaluating renewable energy options in their areas.

Organisations Involved

Anglia Ruskin University, University of East Anglia

Cambridgeshire, Essex, Hertfordshire, Norfolk and Suffolk County Councils.

Greater South East Net Zero Hub, Energy Systems Catapult, UK Power Networks

The region is 18,000 square km (14% of the land area of England) and has a population of 5.6 million (10% of the population of England).

Greater South East Net Zero Hub is funded until September 2023 by the Department for Energy Security and Net Zero. It works with public sector organisations and their stakeholders to increase the number scale and quality of local net zero projects

Energy Systems Catapult – independent not-for-profit centre of excellence set up to accelerate the transformation of the UK’s energy system and ensure UK businesses and consumers capture the opportunities of clean growth on the way to Net Zero. Runs Net Zero Go platform.

UK Power Networks – Distribution network operator - maintains the electricity networks across London, the South East and East of England.


Geoxphere is a UK-based company specialising in Cloud GIS, spatial data management and cost-effective geospatial survey solutions.

Funding of £20,000 (23,000 Euros). Half from the Greater South East Net Zero Hub, half from the five county councils.

In there is the Land Use Tool that has been created and is currently being pilot tested by stakeholders. Following feedback and any refinements, we plan to make the tool more widely available to parish communities in June.

“IRENES presents an exciting opportunity to support a strategic approach to targeting renewable energy projects in response to specific local demand while factoring key constraints” Jeremy Clarke (Programme Manager, Hertfordshire County Council)

We are currently discussing enhancement and legacy opportunities

Funding to enhance the tool functions with the Greater South East Net Zero Hub and county council stakeholders

Expansion of the coverage to the whole of the Greater South East and incorporation of data in the UK Power Networks Collaborative Local Energy Optimisation (CLEO) platform